Barrow’s young future leaders use their holidays to campaign for the oceans

Barrow’s young future leaders use their holidays to campaign for the oceans

Aug 22, 2018

For the fourth year, Year 5 children from over 20 Furness Peninsula schools took part in the Furness Future Leaders Academy. CDEC and the local primary schools acted as facilitators as the children decided to run an impressive campaign to rid the oceans of plastic and so help the fish and animals living in the seas survive.

#ThinkBlueGoGreen was born

Split into four groups, the children took on their roles with commitment. The community champions engaged the community with leaflets and discussion, and raised awareness of plastic in our seas with local decision makers.

The Radioheads created a campaign podcast with BBC Cumbria. Blogs and articles were written by the Media and Journalism crew who also contributed to the campaign posters, while the IT Crowd created the logo, social media content and a website.

The strong link between CDEC and Furness Future Leaders Academy

CDEC has been involved since the inception of the project over four years ago, working closely with the project development team to create the model, ethos and intended outcomes.

Laura Goad, Director of CDEC and one of this year’s facilitators, believes in the immense value of the programme: ‘What these children achieve in just three weeks is incredible. Their hearts and minds are fully engaged in what they are doing and when the programme has finished they take so much away with them. Both in terms of knowledge and skills, but also in confidence and aspiration’

Helping to build confidence and nurture leadership

Over the course of three weeks in the summer holidays, the programme aims to grow soft skills (communication, teamwork, resilience, creativity and self-management) to build the confidence and leadership skills of these young people. And by so doing, raise their aspirations, educational attainment, self-belief and agency.

Whilst working on the campaign, the children are developing their leadership skills; this is explicitly explored through the CDEC session of ‘I/We/Planet’. Here the children are asked to think about themselves as leaders and how they work in teams/with the community (we) and leadership in the context of the world: think global, act local.

Recognition of each child’s skills

The Year 5s also have many opportunities to develop their leadership and teamwork skills, resilience, organisation and concentration (self-management), creativity and self-belief. As the three weeks progress, the children are awarded with coloured wrist bands to represent how they have used and developed the 5 core skills during the programme; many complete the programme with all 5 wristbands.

Local Barrow businesses get involved too

The children also have opportunities to engage in creative and fun, non-campaign related sessions, thanks to the businesses and groups that support FFLA each year.

This year, the children had the opportunity to work creatively and innovatively to build and test a submarine, explore their mindfulness and resilience through yoga and class-based mindfulness activities, work as a team using rugby with Barrow Raiders and work on their presentation and hosting skills through a visit to Abbey House Hotel.

Thank you to the supporters!

FFLA was the idea of John Woodcock MP and is run by Catherine Webb with support from the local primary schools and CDEC. FFLA is very grateful for sponsorship and support from BAE Systems, Cumbria Community Foundation, Cumbria County Council, CGP, Children in Need, Cumbria CVS, FCSCT, The Hadfield Trust, International Nuclear Services, Sir John Fisher Foundation and the Walney Extension Community Fund.



Barrow’s young future leaders use their holidays to campaign for the oceans